Cheltenham dad’s tennis ball invention comes just in time for Wimbledon 2022

A new marking kit created in Gloucestershire stops tennis balls being lost during practice.

By Emma Luther  |  Published
Dave Townsend  BallTrace daughter tennis ball Chelteham business idea
Dave Townsend was inspired to create BallTrace after his daughter hit a tennis ball into another court and couldn’t identify which one was hers.

With Wimbledon fever starting on Monday 27 June 2022, plenty of inspired youngsters will soon be taking to the courts to emulate their sporting heroes.

Fortunately, losing tennis balls week after week might now become a thing of the past, thanks to a new invention by an enterprising Cheltenham dad.

Dave Townsend, a 46-year-old recruitment director, has come up with a way of marking tennis balls so that runaway shots can be retrieved without battles over balls.

Townsend said: ‘My daughter was playing tennis with her friend, when her unmarked ball ended up a couple of courts along. She told me there were four men playing on the court her ball landed on, but she didn’t feel confident to go over and get it, as the men were playing with the same brand of tennis balls she was using.

‘It occurred to me that she might not be the only player who feels anxious about retrieving their property on court. After some research, I realised there was no product on the market designed to let players quickly and inexpensively mark their balls, so I created BallTrace.’

Townsend’s device grips a tennis ball, allowing users to clip a stencil in, before marking their ball using one of the in-built coloured pens.

Made from recycled plastic and with waterproof ink, players can choose from a range of 40 stencils, including letters, emojis and symbols.

Launched on Monday 13 June 2022, BallTrace is now available to buy online for £13.99.

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